Thursday, November 1, 2012



The ones we love with all our hearts! The ones we can't live without.  The ones that drive us nuts.  The ones that evoke all the emotions we never knew we had.  We can't live with them, and we can't live without them!  All of the best jokes come from our family.  Today I am so grateful for them!  They truly make my life complete.    Two shout-outs to family today.

Happy Birthday Kelly!

Today is my sweet daughter's birthday.  I love her smile, her spunk, her passion, her fire.  I love her kindness.  She is a wonderful sister, aunt and daughter.  Our family is lucky to have her.  

Next- I just got back from helping my other daughter, Erin, and her family while she had surgery.
This was a fun filled week in Iowa helping out with grandkid carpools, dinner, shopping, laundry, hospital waiting, ball games, preschool, movies and fun.  This is what the true meaning of family is, the chance to be around when things get a little rocky and we need a little help.  I'm so glad I was able to be there! 

My new heroes for the kind of Grandma I want to be are Mike and Esther Kohn,  parent's of dear friends of mine.  I spent 11 amazing days in China with their son and daughter-in-law Adam and Lauren.  While we were traipsing around  China, Mike and Esther were holding down the fort in Colorado with their two grandchildren.  They didn't just keep the house from burning down, the kids from starving and out of the emergency room, they did cool stuff with them..... Library, museum,  swimming pool, ice cream, you know, cool grandparent stuff.  Then they made the kids a great book of all the fun times they had with them.  Grandparents like that should get an award or at least a few minutes on "The View."  I want to be them when I grow up.

So while I was in Iowa, I tried to be Mike and Esther.  I came up with a few random thoughts that I thought I would share with you.

#1 Mornings are not for everyone!

The first morning I was there, my daughter had to be at the hospital early for surgery.  I took over morning duties, getting kids ready for daycare, pre-school and school, then headed off to join my son in law at the hospital waiting for Erin to come out of surgery.   My grand daughter was happy, perky and all smiles as we got dressed and did hair.  My grandson, on the other hand,  would have preferred I was sucked off the face of the earth.  When we brought out the camera he was even less impressed with me.  Funnily enough, the roles changed by the end of the week, with my little man the happy perky one, and me having to drag my granddaughter out of bed and nearly get her dressed asleep (which is like putting jello in a ziplock bag.....)   I know exactly how they feel. Some mornings I am up and ready to tackle the world, and other mornings.....well, don't talk to me, and get me a Diet Dr. Pepper stat. 

#2 Do Things For Others  

When you get a chance to do something for others, jump on that chance.  It won't come around again.   My 4th grade grandson was celebrating "America Reads day" while I was in Iowa.  He asked me to come to read to his 4th grade class.  While I thought of all the the things I should be doing
(Laundry, helping Erin, cooking, etc)  There was really nothing more important than taking time to read "The Monster at the End of the Book" with furry, lovable Grover to my grandson's class.  The smile on his face as he introduced his grandma from Colorado......Priceless.

#3 Give Comfort 

Funny thing about spending time in Iowa... I was supposed to be there to help Erin and comfort her.  Guess what happened?  My soul was comforted and I was the one who was blessed and uplifted.

#4 Want to feel good? See what great parents your kids are when you see your grandchildren smile. 

Nothing fills your heart more than seeing your grandchildren, happy, healthy, smiling and loved.  With all the Chaos in the world, walking into my daughter's home in Iowa where it is a home filled with love and peace is an amazing thing.  Don't take that for granted.   Thank your children for raising great children.  We all know how tough a job that is, especially in today's world.   Stop what you are doing today and give them a hug and thank them for raising such great kids.

#5 Shout out to the one who married your kid. 

I can't tell you how much I love my son in law, John.  First of all, he married into our family, so he deserves a medal of honor just for that one, brave act.  He puts up with my daughter, who, occasionally acts just like me.  But the number one thing I admire about my son in law? He is a GREAT dad.  In an era where the importance of fathers is disregarded on all sides, I am proud of my son in law for the time and effort he puts in to being a dad.  He is a hands on dad who works all day and comes home and works all evening.   Heck, he put up with me being there all week, how awesome is he?

#6 Life is short, take a big bite 

 Buy the big, hand dipped corn dog for your grandson.  Buy one for yourself.  Life is short. Take a big bite out of it and enjoy every moment.  Look for chances to make memories, to show you care!  Don't pass up an opportunity by being "too busy" to help, to serve, to be happy.  

#7 There is beauty all around, when there's love at home

Who knew the sunsets in Iowa were so beautiful?  Who knew sitting out on the porch on a fall evening was so quiet and peaceful?  My trip to Iowa was a wonderful break from my hectic world.   I LOVED spending time with my people.  I love my daughter and my son in law, and my three grandchildren are amazing, spectacular and fabulous.  Kiss your kids today.  If they are far away, call them, send them an email, or a text and tell them you love them.  Look for the reasons you are proud of them and help them make a difference in the world!  I am going to try a little harder to see the opportunities to make a difference too, even if I am just one random woman. 


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